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Things / Edition 1 available in Paperback
- Pub. Date:
- University of Chicago Press Journals
This book is an invitation to think about why children chew pencils; why we talk to our cars, our refrigerators, our computers; rosary beads and worry beads; Cuban cigars; why we no longer wear hats that we can tip to one another and why we don't seem to long to; what has been described as bourgeois longing. It is an invitation to think about the fetishism of daily life in different times and in different cultures. It is an invitation to rethink several topics of critical inquiry—camp, collage, primitivism, consumer culture, museum culture, the aesthetic object, still life, "things as they are," Renaissance wonders, "the thing itself"—within the rubric of "things," not in an effort to foreclose the question of what sort of things these seem to be, but rather to suggest new questions about how objects produce subjects, about the phenomenology of the material everyday, about the secret life of things.
Based on an award-winning special issue of the journal Critical Inquiry, Things features eighteen thought-evoking essays by contributors including Bill Brown, Matthew L. Jones, Bruno Latour, W. J. T. Mitchell, Jessica Riskin, Jeffrey T. Schnapp, Peter Schwenger, Charity Scribner, and Alan Trachtenberg.
Table of Contents
Sydney R. Nagel
Shadows and Ephemera
Matthew L. Jones
Descartes's Geometry as Spiritual Exercise
Lyric Substance: On Riddles, Materialism, and Poetic Obscurity
The Defecating Duck, or, the Ambiguous Origins of Artificial Life
Words and the Murder of the Thing
Why Has Critique Run Out of Steam: From Matters of Fact to Matters of Concern
Peter Stallybrass and Ann Rosalind Jones
Fetishizing the Glove in Renaissance Europe
Modern Metamorphoses and Disgraceful Tales
W. J. T. Mitchell
Romanticism and the Life of Things: Fossils, Totems, and Images
The Russian Constructivist Flapper Dress
Jeffrey T. Schnapp
The Romance of Caffeine and Aluminum
Object, Relic, Fetish, Thing: Joseph Beuys and the Museum
A Pebble, a Camera, a Man Who Turns into a Telegraph Pole
Fateful Attachments: On Collecting, Fidelity, and Lao She
"Dying Is an Art, Like Everything Else"
"Paths That Wind through the Thicket of Things"
Things on Film: Wright Morris's Field of Vision